Stepping into the New with Jesus Confidence

“And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ. It is right for me to feel this way about you all, because I hold you in my heart, for you are all partakers with me of grace, both in my imprisonment and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel. For God is my witness, how I yearn for you all with the affection of Christ Jesus. And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.” (Philippians 1:6-11, ESV)

This is how I want to start this year: my heart for us all!

As everyone starts posting their visions, power words, and resolutions for the new year, let me take this moment to encourage you– and encourage myself in the process.

I’m one of those people who loves and hates to set goals. Big-picture stuff overwhelms me. So when I set a goal for myself, my perfectionist attitude steps in and starts to discourage me. The funny thing is, I’ve started to notice that I’m not alone. There are so many people I find around me that are unafraid to

dream dreams. They have aspirations that are high and brave, and I have no doubts that their beautiful minds can find a way to attain them. Some of them even have words from the Lord and confirmations that they’re walking in exactly the path that they should be.

All our lives, we were encouraged to dream big, but somewhere along the way, we lost the ability to inspire ourselves through the middle part– the getting from A to B part. And so I’ve noticed that most of us are left with big dreams that we’re afraid to reach for because we think we’re not qualified enough or worthy enough or talented enough. Maybe we’re afraid to fail before we even try. Maybe we’re afraid of rejection or the learning process.

Whatever the root of it may be, it seems that we all walk around with this concerning issue: we believe in the dream, but we don’t believe in our ability to flesh out the dream. I’ve even found this kind of doubt and self-consciousness in myself. And you know what?

I’ve had enough.

I’ve realized it’s not enough to just pump you up. As a writer, there’s this strange mental block of spinning words to communicate encouragement or inspiration but never allowing myself to partake in it. It’s incredibly easy to come to you and speak Jesus and vision into your life, but another thing entirely to grab it for myself. So this year, as I challenge you, I promise that I will also challenge myself.

Today is as good a time as any because if I’m sure of anything, I’m sure of this: God has never gone back on anything he’s said to me. He has never proven himself unfaithful. He has never discounted me from grace– in fact, the only one who ever has is me, and I know I’m not alone in that. So let’s stop pretending that we stand in the confidence of Christ. Let’s do it for real. Because just like Paul says, He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion.

Your salvation is the beginning of that good work, but it doesn’t end there. Your salvation should blossom into your calling. Your salvation should be the starting line for your purpose. And if that’s true, then the completion of that good work– your salvation– should be the completion of your purpose and every crazy dream that God created you to have and steward forth.

And this time, I’m not just saying it for you. Today, I’m saying it for me, too. Today, I’m speaking directly to that spirit of low confidence and I’m telling it to get out of here in the name of Jesus. Today, I’m breaking off every lie the devil has ever told me about inability and unworthiness in the name of Jesus.

Today, I don’t want to watch you take that step from a tower of insecurity; I want to stand right next to you and step into that confidence with you. Let Jesus’ undying, amazing, and ferocious love for you be the fuel you will need to walk into those dreams. It is my prayer that we would all use that love as a lens of discernment to know which avenues and foot trails are God-ordained to the completion of that dream. It is my resolution to pursue that dream every day until I can hold it in my hand. Until the day that I can see the fruit of it and use it as a mile marker that glorifies the only One who could supply the confidence and the sovereignty to fill in my middle spaces. Because you see, Jesus is the best one to show us every step to take and all the inspiration needed to get from point A to point B.

That’s not an excuse to not do the work or to expect the pieces to fall into your lap. We still have to chase it, friend. We still have to put the pieces together. But today, I hope you are so encouraged and excited to get to work. I know I am.

It’s Day One, guys, so chin up and take my hand. Let’s step together.

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